Timehop reminded me that one year ago today I wrote some reflections from isolation after one month of lockdown. I decided to reflect today on the same topics as I’m one week away from my second dose of the vaccine.
Isolation is not new for me – this remains true. I didn’t go out a lot before Covid. If we got food out, we generally always did carry out. I would go to work for 8 hours and once a month or so I would meet with my book club. We would go to church Sunday mornings. Otherwise, I did a lot of what I’m doing now. Walks around the neighborhood with the dog. Cooking at home or carryout when we got food out. I don’t see much changing in three weeks when I cam considered fully vaccinated. I might go sit somewhere with a cup of coffee and a book again at some point. I assume we will start attending church again at some point. Post Covid will not really change the fact that I am normally pretty isolated from the world.
My circle is very small – same again. I don’t think I’m on a lot of lists of people people can’t wait to see once they are vaccinated. No one, thankfully, will be rushing to hug me when I am vaccinated. I will basically still see the 3 people I see right now – my wife and kids. As I said in my post about loneliness, I have always been the expendable one in social circles. As people shrink their circles I will be on the chopping block. We have talked about loneliness is therapy. It is a constant for me. My therapist wans me to explore finding a new circle of people to combat this. It is easier said than done.
I envy retired people – I still envy them a little. I am now almost four months removed from leaving my toxic job. Dealing with the isolation is a lot easier when you are not also dealing with something that makes you miserable on top of the isolation. Going to work is not a good break from the routine when going to work makes you physically ill because of the toxic person who has control over your work life. I do still envy retired people because I know that I will soon have to start thinking about getting a job. I’m hoping that job can be something like substitute teacher or substitute librarian where I still have some control over my schedule and can be off in the summer and the holidays. Too bad no one will pay me to write mediocre blog posts.
Reading is hard right now – I struggled to focus on a book in the midst of the original lockdown. It made things even harder. Reading was my break from the stress and anxiety of life and now the stress and anxiety was making it hard for me to read. I am happy to say that I am back on track. My reading is back to normal and I should hit my normal goal for the year.
I mainly want this to be over for my kids, not me – This is still true. The worst part of this was my daughter having to finish her school year from home and only talk to her friends on video. It was my son losing the social activities that made him happy. I wanted normal for them. My daughter moved to an apartment by campus for the school year and had one in person class each semester. She got to spend her time with people her age instead of her parents. My son is back to playing ultimate Frisbee and camping. Their lives are closer to normal than they were a year ago and that makes me happy.
Life is much better now than it was a year ago when I reflected on life in isolation and there is hope that it will be even better soon. We are making plans for our regular trip to Kentucky to see family in July. I can walk into my local library to browse books. There is hope that my kids will have normal college in the fall. Here’s hoping that a year from today I am reflecting from a normal life.